M&A wrap: GTCR, Canfield Business Honors Program, University of Texas, P.F. Chang’s


Photo credit; The University of Texas

GTCR managing director Phil Canfield learned the fundamentals of private equity investing at the Business Honors Program at The University of Texas at Austin. Now he and his wife Mary Beth are giving back to UT’s McCombs School of Business. In recognition of the $20 million gift, the program has been renamed the Canfield Business Honors Program. “Private equity investors are wired to look for opportunities to get the very best returns for their investment,” Canfield tells Mergers & Acquisitions in a Q&A. “In our business, our job is to maximize ROI. Investing in an education program, especially through scholarship, is the very best ROI investment you can make philanthropically. If you help someone attain a world-class education through scholarship, that investment will compound over that person’s entire lifetime. It’s just like a private equity investment, except you’re investing in people, not deals.”

Related content: GTCR’s Phil Canfield donates $20M to UT’s McCombs School of Business

Mergers & Acquisitions has named 36 leaders the 2019 Most Influential Women in Mid-Market M&A, including Kainos Capital’s Sarah Bradley, Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors’ Nishita Cummings and Pelham S2K Managers’ Venita Fields. All 36 are outstanding dealmakers both inside and outside of their firms. This year, we asked the featured dealmakers to tell their own stories through Q&As, including their advice for women. “Actively lobby and ask from day one to work on deals, so you can gain dealmaking experience early in your career,” advises Bradley. “Too often, women are steered into functions like marketing, business development, and investor relations – the ‘softer side’ where it is easier to place a female. The excuse often used is that the females don’t have the deal experience of their male counterparts. That is why you must be an advocate for yourself and work on deals from the very beginning.”

Related: Meet the 2019 Most Influential Women in Mid-Market M&A.

Deal news
TriArtisan Capital Advisors is in exclusive talks to acquire Chinese food restaurant P.F. Chang’s for as much as $700 million from rival private equity firm Centerbridge Partners, according to people with knowledge of the matter, reports Bloomberg News.

RLJ Equity Partners has purchased Olson Brothers Pro-Vac LLC, an environmental, infrastructure, and municipal services provider based in Puyallup, Washington. Sellers included: Peninsula Capital Partners, a Detroit, Michigan-based private investment firm; Silver Peak Partners, a Denver, Colorado-based private investment firm; and key Pro-Vac management team members Pro-Vac provides support services to the infrastructure, municipal, and environmental markets, including hydroexcavation, storm and sewer maintenance, pipe/line jetting, industrial vacuum cleaning, CCTV inspection, commercial sweeping, tank rental, and other specialty services. Investment bank Brown Gibbons Lang & Co. advised Pro-Vac in the sale.

Enhanced Healthcare Partners, a New York private equity firm focused on the healthcare industry, has made a growth investment in Eventus WholeHealth, a Charlotte, North Caroline-based physician-led provider of interdisciplinary healthcare to individuals residing in skilled nursing and assisted living facilities.

Midwest Growth Partners, a private equity fund founded in 2013 and based in West Des Moines, Ioawa, has closed an investment in Van Becelaere Machine Works, based in Pittsburg, Kansas. Vince Van Becelaere and Joel Van Becelaere, president and vice-president of Van Becelaere Machine Works, respectively, remain as second-generation family owners of the precision machining company and continue to lead the day-to-day operations with support from additional members of the family.

Outlook 2019
Mergers & Acquisitions asked leading dealmakers about their outlook for the middle market in 2019. View the video conversations, shot at ACG Philadelphia’s M&A East:

It is a seller’s market, and deal activity is expected to remain steady, says Ramsey Goodrich of Carter Morse & Goodrich. Watch the full video: Outlook 2019: Great time to sell.

Private equity firms and strategic buyers will use their excess cash and capital to look for deals, says Bharat Ramprasad of Stifel Nicolaus. Watch the full video: Outlook 2019: Excess capital to fuel M&A.

Rising interest rates and regulatory changes may increase volatility, cautions Mark Emrich of Murray Devine. Watch the full video: Outlook 2019: Keep an eye on rising interest rates.

Featured content
Private equity firms are giving back – organizing groceries at food pantries, mentoring students in schools, running races for cancer cures and pitching in at animal shelters. Mergers & Acquisitions highlights the philanthropic and volunteering initiatives of 5 PE firms: the Carlyle Group LP (Nasdaq: CG), Frontier Capital, Huron Capital, the Riverside Co. and Star Mountain Capital. Read the full story, The Big Give.

Dealmakers share their thoughts on Giving Back in video interviews conducted by Mergers & Acquisitions at ACG Philadelphia’s M&A East. Check out our video with Reed Smith’s Jonathan Moyer: For millennial dealmakers, giving back is part of who they are. And watch our conversationw with Baker Tilly Capital’s Judit Nagy-Eichelber: Volunteer work brings teams together.

Infrastructure investors can no longer afford to think about only concrete, glass and steel. Digitalization is transforming the role played by physical assets, and Paris private equity firm Ardian has identified five critical attributes, which form the foundation of a new approach to value creation called Augmented Infrastructure. For more, read: How digital disruption is transforming private equity investments in infrastructure.

With the rising number of cyberattacks, conducting due diligence on data is more important than ever in dealmaking. Read the full guest article by Neil Coulson and Cynthia Cole of Bakter Botts: Why mitigating data risk is crucial in M&A.

The NFL playoff field is narrowed to eight teams after Wild Card Weekend, and the Super Bowl is just two wins away. Off the field, football players build companies. New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady recently teamed with former Giants defensive end Michael Strahan, who is the co-host of ABC’s Good Morning America, to launch a sports media startup called Religion of Sports Media. Muhsin Muhammad, who played wide receiver for the Carolina Panthers and the Chicago Bears, is a managing director of private equity firm Axum Capital Partners. Steve Young, former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, is a co-founder of private equity firm HGGC. Check out: NFL stars Tom Brady, Michael Strahan, Steve Young go PE.

Events
ACG New York Women of Leadership Summit brings together women in the middle-market dealmaking community for a day focused on networking and knowledge sharing on Jan. 17 at the Intercontinental Barclay Hotel. Alexa Von Tobel, chief innovation officer of Northwestern Mutual, keynotes.

Exponent Women kicks off the new year with an evening of networking on Jan. 24 at The Campbell, at New York’s Grand Central Terminal. Jazz Age financier John W. Campbell converted the space to his private office and reception hall in 1923, and it has recently been restored by design firm Ingrao Inc.

ACG Boston, ACG Connecticut, ACG New Jersey, ACG New York & ACG Philadelphia host ACG Northeast Dealmaking at the Mountain at Stowe Mountain Resort in Stowe, Vermont Jan. 27-29. The event provides a chance for middle-market M&A professionals from across the northeast to come together for two days of close knit networking, shared conversations and valuable time spent to deepen your relationships within the deal community.


Mary Kathleen Flynn

Mary Kathleen Flynn

Mary Kathleen Flynn joined SourceMedia in 2011, serving as the Editor-in-Chief of Mergers & Acquisitions. MK oversees the brand’s content on all media platforms, including website, e-newsletters, video, slideshows, podcasts and print.


Demitri Diakantonis

Demitri Diakantonis

Demitri Diakantonis joined SourceMedia in 2015 and serves as Managing Editor of Mergers & Acquisitions. He covers all aspects of middle-market dealmaking, with a focus on strategic buyers and the consumer and retail sectors, and writes The Buyside column.